USC To Play At Stanford Sunday|
Feb. 7, 2015
The USC Trojans (9-13, 1-9) will play the Stanford Cardinal (15-7, 6-4) at Maples Pavilion in Palo Alto, Calif. on Feb. 8 at 5:30 p.m. The game will air on ESPNU and ESPNLA 710. USC has lost nine of its last 10 games, including a season-high seven straight. Four of the seven losses in the streak have been by four points or less.
BREAKING DOWN STANFORD -- Stanford is coming off a 69-67 home loss to UCLA on Feb. 5, a game which it trailed by 22 points in the second half before rallying to make it close. Seniors Chasson Randle (20.5), Anthony Brown (16.0) and Stefan Nastic (13.8) all score in double figures for the Cardinal. Stanford defeated USC 78-76 at the Galen Center on Jan. 11, as USC rallied from 13 points down with under seven minutes to go in the game before a late Trojan turnover sealed the victory for Stanford. Four of the last five games against Stanford have been decided by two points or in overtime. Stanford leads the all-time series 123-122 (reflects 1 USC win vacated in 2008 due to NCAA penalty).
TROJANS SUFFER ANOTHER HEARTBREAKER AT CAL -- Tyrone Wallace sank a long three-pointer at the buzzer to give California a 70-69 win over USC at Haas Pavilion in Berkeley, Calif on Feb. 5. It was Cal's second consecutive win on a buzzer-beater and perhaps USC's most trying loss. The Trojans rallied from 12 down early in the second half to take the lead down the stretch. Cal took a 67-66 lead with 41 seconds left on a layup by David Kravish, but Katin Reinhardt answered with a jumper with 23.2 seconds left to give USC the lead. Jordan McLaughlin made a free throw with 4.9 seconds left to stretch the lead to 69-67, but his second attempted rimmed out and the Bears got off the game winner at the buzzer. McLaughlin led USC with 20 points and Wallace led Cal with 18.
OREGON ON DECK -- USC's next game will be against Oregon (16-7, 6-4) at the Galen Center on Feb. 11. Oregon defeated Washington 78-74 in Eugene, Ore. on Feb. 3 and will host Washington State on Feb. 8 before traveling to Los Angeles. USC lost 75-67 at Oregon on Jan. 22 in a game it fell behind by a score of 16-2 at the start. Oregon is led in scoring by Joseph Young who averages 19.3 points per game. USC leads the all-time series 60-51 (reflects 2 wins in 2008 vacated due to NCAA penalty), but has lost nine consecutive games to the Ducks.
JUST HOW YOUNG ARE THEY...? -- According to Statsheet.com, USC ranks tied for the third-youngest team in the country and first among the Power 5 conferences in terms of minutes played by class. Among the top 12 teams listed in terms of youngest rosters, only three have a winning record and one of those is No. 1 Kentucky. USC is one of three of those 12 youngest teams to have a strength of schedule ranked in the top 70. Conversely, 10 of the 13 oldest rosters have a record of .500 or better. USC is one of only 15 teams in the country without a senior and the Trojans have had only one scholarship junior (Strahinja Gavrilovic) play this season.
NIKOLA 2.O -- USC sophomore forward Nikola Jovanovic from Serbia has been compared to former Trojan and NBA star Nikola Vucevic from Montenegro. To this point in Jovanovic's college career, it is a fair comparison. As a freshman Jovanovic played much more than Vucevic did and had better numbers. As sophomore starters, Vucevic averaged 10.7 points and 9.4 rebounds, while Jovanovic is averaging 13.0 points and 7.6 rebounds per game.
REINHARDT TIES SCHOOL 3-POINT RECORD -- USC guard Katin Reinhardt tied the school 3-point baskets made record of 9 when he went 9-for-18 from long-range vs. Colorado on Jan. 29. Reinhardt tied the USC record held by Anthony Pendleton set vs. Long Beach St. on Dec. 9, 1987. KR is starting to find his stroke from 3-point range, going 19-for-45 (42.2 percent) from beyond the arc in the last 7 games. He began the season going 21-for-65 (32.3 percent) from three-point range. Reinhardt was 0-for-4 from beyond the arc vs. Utah on Feb. 1, snapping a streak of nine consecutive games with a three-pointer made. Reinhardt is T-7th in Pac-12 games with 2.3 makes per game from 3-point range.
PUTTING THE "FREE" IN FREE THROWS -- After struggling all season at the charity stripe, USC combined to make 78.7 percent (48-for-61) of its shots from the line in the three games at home from Jan. 7-14. USC made 17 of 20 free throws in the win vs. California on Jan. 7, then hit 19 of 24 vs. Stanford on Jan. 11 and 12 of 17 vs. UCLA on Jan. 14. USC had made only 58.8 percent of its free throws in the previous nine games (97-for-165). USC then posted its best effort from the line by going 16-for-18 (.889) at Oregon State on Jan. 23. USC has shot over 70 percent from the line in 4 of the last 8 games, after accomplishing the feat just once in the first 14 games. USC was 15-for-28 (.536) from the free throw line in the OT loss to Army on Dec. 13 and 23-for-35 (.657) in the 3 OT loss to Colorado on Jan. 29. USC was also at 50 percent (9-for-18) in the 70-69 loss at California on Feb. 5. USC is shooting 64.5 percent from the free throw line this season.
IN LINE FOR THE WIN -- USC is 8-8 when taking more free throws than it opponent and 1-5 when taking less free throws. USC is also 5-3 when making more free throws than the competition and 5-3 when hitting 68.0 percent or better from the charity stripe.
BATTLE OF THE BOARDS -- USC has been outrebounded by 35 (197-232) in the last six games. Prior to that, the Trojans has outrebounded the opposition by 30 rebounds (610-580) and won the battle of the boards in 12 of the first 16 games. Still, USC has won the rebound battle in 14 of 22 games this season and trails by only 5 rebounds (807-812). USC's season high for rebounds was 51 vs. Penn State on Nov. 23.
GAINING EXPERIENCE -- Eleven of the 13 players to appear in a game for USC this season are either freshmen or sophomores. USC's freshmen and sophomores have logged 92.0 percent of the team's minutes. Despite Malik Martin (3+ games) and Jordan McLaughlin (2+ games) missing time due to injury, USC's four freshmen had combined to play 39.0 percent of USC's minutes this season.
SEEKING SECOND CHANCE -- USC outscores the opposition in the second half by just under a point and outshoots them 44.0 percent to 39.6 percent. In the first half of games, USC is outscored by 3.4 points per game and is outshot, 39.7 percent to 44.0 percent. USC also forces 18 more turnovers than assists allowed after the break. USC has trailed at the half 15 times: